There are a half dozen or more must-hike trails in the immediate vicinity of the bnb — Stout Grove, the Boy Scout Tree Trail, Damnation Creek Trail, Hiouchi Trail and the Simpson-Reed Grove are a few of the marquee walks in the National Park. The Little Bald Hills Trail may not be among them, but it offers enough unique qualities to make it a standout in its own right.
Bike-friendly. Yes, trail is open to mountain bikes. This is singular exception to the rule book that lords over all other State and National Park trails in the area. The trail is horse-friendly too.
Plentiful mushrooms. Now, officially, one needs a permit to pick mushrooms, and even then, you can’t pick mushrooms on National Park land. So let’s say you are just interested in looking for and then merely looking at mushrooms. This would be a good trail to aim for. What you are likely to spot? Hedgehog, chanterelle, yellow foot, matsutake, and lobster.
Distance. If you are a distance hiker, the trail’s almost-10 mile length is especially long. Of course you’ll need to arrange for a shuttle (or park a second car at the trail’s end) before starting, but if you hike the full length of the trail you will see a vast swath of forest — from old-growth redwoods, to groves of fern, rhododendron and huckleberry, to much drier groves of fir and pine.
Few hikers. If you seek the solitude of a trail which attracts few others, this could be it, a trail you will often have all to yourself.
No roots. Little Bald Hills Trail offers a vacation from always having to watch your step. This is good for trail runners and bikers of course, but also just a pleasant fact that slow-poke hikers will enjoy too.
Be aware that the first few miles of the trail (in both directions) are a mostly uphill slog. If you are wary of inclines, it’s best to stick to the loop hikes of Stout and Simpson-Reed. If you want to spice up your stay with a workout and to really get lost in the beauty of a primeval forest, though, this is an excellent choice.